Sam and I were lucky enough to pull off one more Boulder trip before the season ends. We headed out Wednesday evening and like usual we set up camp in the dark. I stumbled upon this site during my last trip to this area a couple months prior; we were blessed to have it and the adjacent lake to ourselves.
The following morning we walked the short distance between our campsite and the lake; to our dismay the lake's water level was depleated and mostly frozen. We could see pods of Brookies under the ice near the dam and anticipated open water and larger concentrations near the inlet. We found fish but they were very spooky. After some failed attempts, I was able to find some very willing parties to a sinking dragonfly nymph. Sam also found some success with a small fly that resembled a shuttlecock.
Mousey McMouseface (see tutorial for the 2.0 version) and gained some hope of breaking the curse of NOT catching a trout on a mouse that has seemed to hover over me. But tonight was not my night for success in that department but I did receive a couple nice blow-ups gave me hope. I tied up two "Mikey McMousefaces" after watching Fly Fish Food's video. I used what braid I had on hand (15#) but the back hook broke off the first fly after a few too many snags in the shoreline vegetation. I think another type of connecting cordage was in order so my 2.0 model implements a furled connection.
earlier this year. Last spring we hiked to this lake--what felt like straight uphill--from below and gained 1,700 ft in altitude over 2.5 miles. We were hoping that hiking from the top down would be much easier even though it was a mile longer of a hike. Even though it was only a difference of 400 ft in elevation, it seemed like we were constantly hiking downhill to this lake; I was concerned about how the hike out would be. To make matters worse my SD card on my phone would register and I couldn't access the GPS app that has saved our bacon multiple times during other Boulder Mountain trips. But the thought of the large Brooks and Splake we would catch kept my feet moving and I assumed the heart-pumping adrenaline from wrangling these beasts in their fall colors would give me the energy to power through what seemed will be another straight uphill hike.
During a break from not-catching I had--what I suspect to be--a 5-hour energy that had gone rank. After tipping the container back and consuming the contents I realized there was only about 1/3 of the suspected amount of liquid inside. But I distinctly remember "unzipping" the perforated wrapper off the lid just prior to ripping it down so needless to say it gave me a sinking feeling. About an hour later when it was time to leave, I wasn't feeling very good. I snarfed down some food and drank my last protein milk. The food seemed to help my upset stomach so I suspected I was just having hunger-pains. The hike out wasn't as difficult as I expected and the reflection of the Jeep headlights parked at the trail head came surprisingly quickly. But by the time we arrived back to camp, I felt torn-up. I was so dizzy and nauseated I couldn't even get myself to leave my seat. Sam was nice enough to bring me some water and a few snacks to settle my stomach. But after holding back far too long, I painted the rocks with vomit; luckily that did the trick and I felt dramatically better.
At about 3 am I stepped outside the tent and raided the cooler; my hunger returned with intensity. As I sat back in my camp-chair I looked up towards the sky and allowed my thoughts to wonder. The vastness of the starry-sky enveloped me as I recanted the details of the trip thus far and thought of my family--hopefully sleeping restfully--back home. Regardless of the stressors in my life that lately seem to consume me on a regular basis, I was at complete peace and comforted at this moment. Gratitude filled my heart as I thought about my wife and each of my sons. Tears welled up as I began to thank my Creator for all the good that I have in my life. No problem I may have is insurmountable; but at times I forget this.
With spirits lifted and a burst of energy, Sam and I hiked back to camp to enjoy another of our favorite camping meals; BBQ pork tacos. My wife makes the BBQ pork in a Crock pot and then I package it in a vacuum-seal bag (with refried beans). It makes for easy cleanup as you can heat it up in boiling water and just squeeze the contents out on the tortilla. With some cheese, shredded cabbage, hot sauces, and sour cream you'll have one of the best camp meals imaginable (except maybe some Lloyd's BBQ ribs)...